Olive Mae Sheeley, age 97, of Hague and Saratoga Springs, formerly of Middletown, passed away on September 25, 2021 at Saratoga Hospital after a brief admission from Wesley Nursing Home. Olive was born February 6, 1924 in the elevator of Mt. Vernon (NY) Hospital. She was the daughter of Royal Walter Haines and May Shurter Haines. Olive grew up in the Bronx, and at age 16 graduated high school, was accepted to multiple colleges with scholarships, but due to family financial needs went to work in a department store and an insurance company as a secretary and administrative assistant. In 1947 she married Clarence Sheeley of Monticello, a WWII veteran whom she met while visiting cousins in the Catskills, and they soon settled and raised their family in Middletown, and for a time on a dairy farm in Liberty. She loved animals, many times making room for another dog or cat that needed a home. Vacations were often hiking, camping and cooking over an open fire. After their five children grew up, Clarence and Olive built their retirement home in the woods of Hague, a peaceful refuge for her. Having grown up enjoying nature in New York City, living in the Adirondacks expanded her dearly loved outdoor world. Olive followed news of the world and achieved her goals of visiting Hawaii and Israel. In her 80s she went ice fishing, was still hiking with her family and was always excited for new adventures. Olive was a protector of the natural world, teaching her children and grandchildren to pick up litter even if left by someone else, and was an early advocate of recycling. She was a reader and knew that education changed lives and opened opportunities, and passed this on to the next three generations. She gave her children her blessing to pursue any good direction, encouraging each child to follow their own path in life.
Family meant everything to Olive; she is loved and will be dearly missed by all. She was predeceased by her husband Clarence in 1988, by her brother Roy Walter Haines, and her half brother Parker Kastrup. She leaves her five children who will cherish her forever: Robert (Barbara) of Glen Spey, Jean (Larry) of Massachusetts, William (Alecia) of Saratoga Springs, Donald of Saratoga Springs, and Judy Read of Homer. She is adored by and leaves wonderful memories with her 10 grandchildren and her 10 great grandchildren. Olive’s treasured grandchildren are Robert Collins, Kevin Sheeley (Nicole), Kelly Sheeley (Frank); Jonah Zimmerman (Helen), Barret Zimmerman (Hannah); John Sheeley (Michelle), Lauren Qasba (Omi); Christopher Read (Kira), Heather Read Slade (KC), and Paul Read (Katie).
Arrangements are through www.CompassionateFuneralCare.com in Saratoga Springs NY.
A family memorial service will be held in the future.
To honor Olive's commitment to caring and to education, in lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Nursing Scholarship Program at www.saratogahospital.org
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